Secret agents are popular with kids of all ages. From Disney Channel's "Special Agent Oso" to the popular tween character Agent Cody Banks, secret agents intrigue just about every age group and both genders. For the child who wants a secret agent party, there are several party games for him and his guests to enjoy. Most are so simple to set up, they won't cause you to run like James Bond for a shaken, not stirred, martini.
Secret agents need to be in top physical condition so they can maneuver around any obstacle or through a crowd. The kids at your party can see how ready they are to be a secret agent by running through an obstacle course. If you are having an outdoor party, you can set up balance beams and items for the children to jump over, such as sticks, small boxes or balls. If you want to add water hazards to the course, you could use a glass of water or even a small sprinkler or garden hose, as long as the children don't mind getting wet. An indoor obstacle course can include running around furniture, going under tables and jumping over small objects. You can time the children and give awards for the fastest times, depending on the age and demeanor of your group. Make sure the items you use are age appropriate, especially when asking the children to jump over them. Do not use any large pieces that will be hard for smaller children to clear when jumping. Items used should also be secure and not have any parts that jut out or could harm the children.
Secret agents need to decipher codes quickly on missions. Give your junior secret agents a coded message, and see if they can decode it. Websites such as Top Spy Secrets (topspysecrets.com) offer a cipher wheel you can download and print. Use the wheel to create the coded message before the party, and give guests a cipher wheel along with the message. Depending on the ages of the children, you can give them one group message or give an individual message and cipher wheel to each child.
Observation Scavenger Hunt
Secret agents need to be observant and pay close attention to details. To test this skill, take closeup photos of items around your neighborhood or home and print the pictures. Give the children the photos and set them loose. Tell them to identify the object in each photo and its location by writing the information on the picture or a separate sheet of paper. You can have each child work individually or in a group. If you have the scavenger hunt in your neighborhood, make sure each photographed item is in general view and your neighbors do not mind kids walking near their homes. For the safety of the children, pair each child or group of children with an adult or teenage sibling. The older member of the group should function as a chaperone and not help with the actual clue finding, unless the children need to be redirected. Do not place any clues near the street or across the road, and make the boundaries clear to the children so they do not attempt to go near the street. If you have any concerns about the safety of your neighborhood, the scavenger hunt should take place in your own backyard or in your home.
Let your secret agents practice their fingerprinting skills on one another. You can choose to buy a fingerprinting kit for children or you can choose to use an ink pad and heavy paper. Have the children fingerprint each other, and give each child his own set as a party favor at the end of the party. Most fingerprint kits include supplies for dusting for fingerprints and transferring them to paper. You or another adult will want to practice this in advance. Once you have found a surface that responds well to the dusting, clean it thoroughly, and leave one or two full fingerprints on the surface for the children to find.
Every secret agent needs a secret mission. Your junior agents can be sent on a mission to find their gift bags or even the birthday cake. Leave a single clue, in code, for the group to find. The code can be written using the cipher wheel found on Top Spy Secrets. Give the wheel to the kids to decode the clue. The clue should send the group to a second location, where another coded clue will be waiting. Each clue should proceed in this manner until the children end up at the final destination. Four to five clues are usually enough for the kids to enjoy the game without getting bored.
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